Sunday, July 19, 2015

Panorama!

Some time ago we climbed a hill to have a picnic with a view. What a hill it was and what a view it offered!




There is a wooden staircase leading you to the top. In late June, the hill was lavishly blooming all over. This alone would have been reason enough to pay a visit.




Some of the plants flourishing on this hill are rather uncommon in our country and can only be found on ancient dwelling sites where livestock kept the growth of the native plants short protecting the ‘ancient newcomers’ or archaeophytes from disappearing. The above dropwort (Filipendula vulgaris) (sikoangervo) is one of those.




But the views down to the river Aura and the surrounding fields were even more spectacular, at the same time soothing and energising. I could have stayed there for hours admiring the panorama. With the added effect of the blossoming around our feet the place felt heavenly.




In ancient times, the rock that is now largely covered in a meadow was an islet from where the early settlers could keep an eye on the traffic on the waterways around it. Later when the land masses had risen thanks to the phenomenon known as post-glacial rebound and the sea slowly withdrew an important road took shape nearby. This historical road is still winding through the fields here.




Archaeological research has revealed there was a castle on top of the rock from around the 6th to the 14th century. The place is located in Lieto some 10km northeast from downtown Turku. There are no longer any structures left of the fortifications but based on tradition the site is still called the Old Castle of Lieto.





There has been an estate by the name of Old Caste at the foot of the hill at least from the early 15th century. The present manor house dates from the 1930s. It is now owned by the University of Turku and houses a museum with both permanent and changing exhibitions (closed on Mondays). We didn’t see any of those yet as we made this first visit on the Midsummer weekend when everything was closed, even the summer café located in one of the former barns. (Should you ever plan a visit to Finland do remember to avoid Midsummer unless you are invited to stay at a local.) 


The Aura river valley is recognised as one of the Finnish national landscapes. We will certainly return to the hilltop often and are planning to hike the trail from downtown Turku following the banks of the river to the Old Castle soon. If only this prolonged period of changeable chilly weather would come to an end.

Here you can see winter views from the hilltop.


8 comments:

  1. I so enjoyed that visit with you! And I too wish the weather would be more summery..

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    1. Thanks, Freda. Let's hope both you and I will have some warm weather before too long.

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  2. Dear Teresa - the photos are stunning, I love them, the panorama, the colours, the serenity, it is all absolutely my kind of place.

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    1. It certainly took out breath away. We are planning to return to see the change of the seasons from the top of the hill.

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  3. Oh my goodness, that really is an incredibly beautiful view - and panorama!!! Absolutely wonderful!!! xx

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    1. We were very lucky to pay the very first visit at the height of the blooming.

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  4. What a wonderful place to go! The colours and the wildflowers on the hillside are so lovely. The views to are so amazing everything looks so green compared with here. Sarah x

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    1. Our summer was very late this season. We climbed the hill the second time this week and the colours were now different. I'm planning to post about that soon.

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